Villains Are Characters Too.


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I very recently got myself a t-shirt from Hot Topic with The Lion King’s Scar on it. A comment from my mom made me think to write this. To sum it up what she said briefly, it was along the lines of, “I like how you like the villains; you don’t like them for the evil things they do but you like them for who they are as characters.” This is so true for me and reminded me of a pet peeve of mine that I want to discuss now.

From some of my past circles of social life, something that always annoyed me was when people would discuss movie/book characters, and while they’d discuss what they did and didn’t like about the good guy/hero/heroine as a full character, they’d then turn around on the villain with statements of, “They’re the bad guys, you’re not suppose to like them!”

The villain would fall to the bottom of discussion, brushed away as a two dimensional, flat, black and white stand up, who got what they deserved. I would be left feeling awkward, because, I’m sorry, I didn’t realizing liking Darth Vader was a crime against the story, the hero, or being a decent person!

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Those social circles have been long gone and I’ve grown more comfortable in speaking up about what I think and like. And I still see that thinking from time to time. Some people do not understand why one would like a villain, while others fall all over certain ones simply because they’re good looking, *cough-most-Loki-fangirls-cough*.

I certainly would never applaud the villain’s evil deeds nor do I like or appreciate every single villain that I encounter. However, I see villains as more than just a black and white cutout that can be summarized by the one word: “bad”. They can be much more than just “bad” and that’s why I like them.

They are characters too. They can and should be as complex and compelling as the heroes they’re opposing.

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Take Loki. Adopted. Mischevious. Jealous. Emotionally wounded. Clever. Bitter. Sassy. He’s a well-rounded, brilliantly evil, smart, yet understandable villain. Or how about one of my other personal favorites, The Joker. Disfigured. Crazy. Heartless. Clever. Has wicked sense of humor. Mysterious. He’s bad for bad’s sake, to ruffle Batman’s feathers and see if anyone is up to the challenge of stopping his evil deeds.

And Darth Vader is just iconic-ly awesome from voice to costume to back story. I wouldn’t know what to say if you didn’t like Darth Vader at least a little bit. And there are many more!

While not all fictional villains are as dimensional as they should be (shame on you, writers! Shame! Shame!) the ones that are do deserve to be acknowledged for who they’ve been created to be. Stop labeling them as just ‘bad’ and look at them as deeply as you look into your favorite heroes. See what you can learn from their mistakes and appreciate what they add to the story. That is part of the art of appreciating the fictional stories around us.

Okay. Pet peeve rant over! :)

~Jamie

My Favorite Villains


Today is a list of my top nine favorite villains. I don’t know about you, but I like a good villain in my fiction. They come in all shapes and sizes; there’s epic, there’s psycho, there’s cursed, there’s misunderstood, there’s even just plain scary. Each of these can add all sorts of interesting factors to a story. You need villains for there to be heroes, so I consider the villain to be very essential to a good story.

I had a little debate with myself on how I wanted to rank the villains and who should be first. I finally decided that the first villain would be the greatest villain in my opinion and the rest of them would be ranked by who are my favorites.

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1. Darth Vader from Star Wars. Probably the greatest fictional villain to ever exist–or will exist– in the cinematic world. Darth Vader is the perfect package for a great and intimidating villain–the ‘mask’, the voice, his outfit and cape, his stride, his use of the Force, his agenda and lack of mercy. I don’t know if it can get anymore epic, but he really adds a lot to The Original Trilogy and he was the first villain that I ever really liked.

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2. Loki Laufeyson from Thor and The Avengers.He’s that menacing villain with a tragic back story. I didn’t know Loki was going to turn bad when I first watched Thor so I got attached to him rather quickly because, admit it, Thor was a jerk for most of his movie. I was sad to see him turn evil but at the same time he was perfect for it, being the god of mischief. Loki was also the perfect bad guy for The Avengers’ first villain and he was pure evil that was just such fun to watch. I’m really excited to see where Loki’s character will go in The Dark World in regards to villainy and being Thor’s brother.

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3. The Joker from The Dark Knight. I’m not really sure what keeps Loki just a little ahead of The Joker in this list because I really really really really really love Heath Ledger’s Joker. I could care less about everything else that happens in The Dark Knight, The Joker completely stole and made The Dark Knight a success in my book. He’s completely scary yet funny in a dark sense, his outfit is freaking awesome, and what makes him tick is terrifying because he doesn’t do things for the normal ‘villain-y’ reasons. The Joker could easily be second or first on this list but he shall have to be happy at third.

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4. Jim Moriarty from Sherlock. He’s here at number four because he’s just absolutely slimy, smart and revolting. Since I first read some of the Sherlock stories, I’ve always liked him because he was that mastermind who was Sherlock’s equal with the mind games. Jim Moriarty from Sherlock is easily my favorite adaption of the character I’ve seen and I love to hate him!

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5. Walkers/Zombies/The Living Dead. They’re no one specific but they scare the hell out of me so I decided they needed to be on here. They come in different versions, some move fast, some move slow, some go for the brain and other just try to bite down wherever. Either way, they’re disgusting; they’re a force of unnaturalness that make the characters–even us, at least me–to question our very cores of inner strength. And they’re freaking terrifying.

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6. The Daleks from Doctor Who. I haven’t yet gotten tired of seeing The Doctor face down his old foes; they’re classic Doctor Who villains; little creatures with no feelings and no loyalties except to each other. Their classic voice and robotic way of talking adds to the feeling-less beings. And who gets tired of hearing, “EX-TER-MIN-ATE.”

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7. Cruella De Vil from One Hundred and One Dalmatians and 101 Dalmatians. Cruella has been one of my favorite villains since I was little. She’s scary, she’s in your face, she’s a demon-like driver, her car is the neatest thing ever, she’s ridiculous and outrageous. If I was psychotic with a huge wallet I’d probably be a lot like her. :P

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8. Rumpelstiltskin from Once Upon A Time. Rumpelstiltskin is a lot of things, both a villain and a hero, but he fits the villain category very well. Rumpelstiltskin is one of those happy type villains; full of magic, he’s constantly striking deals with our favorite fairy tale characters, often not telling them certain downsides that will follow their deal. He’ll do a deal with anyone, from the pure evils to the fairest of them all and back again. He has a giddy laugh that’s funny to hear, too. He’s a sympathetic villain in many respects and he’s one of my favorites.

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9. Ursula from The Little Mermaid. I’ve only seen The Little Mermaid once and I didn’t really care for it. Ursula was the best part of the whole movie for me and she’s one of my most favorite Disney villains. She was downright scary and evil–she also is purple and that’s my favorite color. So. :P

I have several other favorites which could go on to make a top twenty list but picking nine was hard enough, so these I’ll call honorable mentions. Among them include Emperor Palpatine, Boba Fett, Bettlejuice, The Terminator, weeping angels, Kahn, and Red Skull.

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I know September is over, but I have two more lists planned out, so this is going to spill into October, but that’s okay. Hopefully you guys are enjoying these as much as I am. :)

~Jamie

May the 4th Be With You


tumblr_m37fbdmuxi1qcjq6vo1_500It is Star Wars Day already; this is the third Star Wars Day I’ve celebrated on my blog!

I haven’t talked about Star Wars in a while but today would be a good day to tip my hat to the saga once again, as being that first big fandom that grabbed my heart and admiration by the first movie. Star Wars is what helped connect me to many of my long time internet friends and it was there for me during family difficulties and a transition of churches and friends. It helped bring me and Kayla together to bond over something special and fun and put me on the road of loving sci-fi and fantasy.

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What I love about Star Wars:

“Do or do not, there is no try.”

Darth Vader.

The Millennium Falcon.

“I love you.” “I know.”

Chewbacca.

“Who’s scruffy looking?”

Imperial March

Lightsabers

Princess Leia

“Would it help if I got out and pushed?” “It might!”

Jedi Knights

Carbonite.

“Either shut him up or shut him down!”

Han Solo.

Jedi tricks.

Rebels.

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I’m not sure what we’ll be doing to celebrate other then maybe listen to the soundtracks and walk around wearing our helmets.  Maybe I’ll dress up as Vader for a little while and hopefully we’ll watch one of the movies, but nothing is concrete. Any of you have plans to enjoy some Star Wars today?

Anyway; may the Force be with you! Fly your X-wings safe and don’t stick anyone with your lightsabers today.

….I have a house to go decorate.

~Jamie

The Star Wars Test


It’s about time I did something Star Wars!


[] You own more Star Wars books than textbooks.

[X] You own at least one Star Wars shirt (Mawhahaha, I’m stocking up on shirts like there’s no tomorrow. I have at least six SW shirts)

[X] You have “used” a Jedi Mind Trick
[X] You can name all 7 movies in order without hesitating (seven? SEVEN? Come on. Seriously.)
[X] You have pretended to use the Force on moving objects (who hasn’t done this?)
[] You own at least one lightsaber (I actually don’t personally own one, but our house is full of them.)
[X] You watch the Clone Wars (I do watch the Clone Wars–very recently, anyway.)
[X] Your favorite video games are those with Star Wars in the title (I don’t play video games often, but my favorite is a lego Star Wars one.)
[] You’ve had at least one Star Wars-themed birthday party. (NO! I haven’t yet!)
[X] You can breathe like Darth Vader
Current Total: 7/10
[X] You hum the Star Wars theme song in the shower
[] You’ve seen the films so many times that the cases are worn down (since I’ve only gotten into it since last year, no.)
[X] You surf the Internet looking for funny Star Wars videos and pictures
[X] You listen to any of the Star Wars soundtracks in your free time
[X] You desperately wish that the Star Wars galaxy actually existed
[X] You freak out whenever there’s a sale on Star Wars merchandise
[X] Your favorite LEGO sets are the Star Wars ones
[X] You would totally dress up in full Darth Vader rig just for the fun of it (Excuse me, I HAVE done this, thank you very much.)
[] You want to join the 501st Legion (My ignorance shows… what the 501st Legion?)
[X] Wookieepedia is your friend (I’ve not been on there much, but it has helped me several times, so, yeah.)
Current Total: 8/10
[X] Your avatar on at least one social site is Star Wars-themed (Yes! Actually, on two!)
[X] The wallpaper on your desktop has something to do with Star Wars
[X] You tie a lot of conversations back to something that happened in Star Wars
[] You write Star Wars fan fiction just for the fun of it
[] You have gone to a Star Wars Weekend and/or a Star Wars Celebration (I WANT TO SO BADLY!)
[X] Most of the stuff on your Christmas list pertains to Star Wars
[X] Your hero is a Star Wars character (Luke Skywalker is number three on my ultimate fictional heroes list!)
[] If you could spend the day with anybody, it would be George Lucas
[] You know the difference between astromech and protocol droids
[X] You think of time in years in relation to the 1977 theatrical release of A New Hope (yes! I actually do do that!)
Current Total: 6/10
[] You can think of ten good reasons why you should have your own Death Star
[] You can’t spell “rectify” but you can spell “Kashyyyk”
[X] You know more Star Wars planets than earth countries
[X] You argue with your friends and/or siblings over who would win: Boba Fett or Darth Vader
[] You are completely open to all Star Wars characters coming back to life – even Darth Maul (NOOOO)
[X] You dress up as Star Wars characters for Halloween (While we don’t celebrate Halloween, we did wear masks inside the house!)
[] You dress your pet up as a Star Wars character for Halloween
[X] You sometimes say “May the Force Be With You” instead of “good-bye”
[] You have seen the movies so many times that you can say the characters’ lines
[X] You debate with your friends and/or siblings about Star Wars characters
Current Total: 5/10
[X] You would put a Star Wars bumper sticker on your car
[X] You’ve been belittled or even bullied because of how much you love Star Wars
[X] The best gift you could ever get would be a set of storm trooper armor that had been worn in the movies
[X] The only books you really check out at the library are Star Wars ones (For a long time, that was all I checked out).
[] You would laugh out loud if somebody was talking about how the Death Star blew up Naboo
[X] You know which Skywalker twin is older
[X] You know what “lekku” are
[] Your favorite authors write Star Wars books
[X] Star Wars is still your favorite movie even after seeing it 10 times (I haven’t actually seen the movies this many times.)
[X] You were one of the only people who noticed that puppet Yoda was made CG in the 3D version of TPM (and was a little mad about it)

Current Total: 8/10
[X] You study Star Wars books and websites in your free time (not everyday, but yeah.)
[] Your YouTube or e-mail account name has something Star Wars-y in it
[X] You get an adrenalin rush and/or a tingly sensation up your spine whenever you hear the Star Wars theme song or see The Crawl
[] You know what “The Crawl” is, and you refer to it as such
[X] You have a hard time imagining life without Star Wars
[X] You feel sorry for people who have never heard of and/or never watched Star Wars
[] You can name and identify fifty or more different clone troopers
[X] You get kinda ticked when “uneducated” people mix up clone troopers and storm trooper
[] You can speak and/or understand Mando’a and/or Huttese
[X] If someone says the word “star” the first thing that comes to mind is an epic battle between a Jedi Master and a Sith Lord
Current Total: 6/10
[X] You would likely have a heart attack if somebody said, “Who’s George Lucas?”
[X] You think John Williams is the best composer. Ever. Period. Exclamation point.
[] You have made at least one Star Wars-inspired video (I don’t make videos!)
[X] You want everyone to ditch the webcams and invent holographic-enabled comlinks already!
[] You know what “THX-1138” means and you look for it in all of the Star Wars films
[X] You know exactly what alien species you would be and what kind of job you would have if you lived in the Star Wars galaxy
[X] Your favorite phrase is, “A Long Time Ago, In A Galaxy Far, Far Away….”
[X] The only comic books you read are Star Wars
[X] You can’t listen to Liam Neeson’s voice without thinking, “Qui-Gon Jinn!”
[X] You know more about the actors who were in Star Wars than you do about any others (Sorta… this would be tied with the Avengers Cast)
Current Total: 8/10
It Has Been Assumed That You…
[] Wait outside of the movie theater for two days to see the latest Star Wars film
[X] Exercise by staging lightsaber battles with your friends and/or siblings
[] Know all of the movies by heart
[] Don’t have a life beyond Star Wars
[X] Are mortal enemies with Trekkies/Trekkers (I rather am, because every Trekkie I’ve met has spewed some dislike for Star Wars…. no offense, Trekkies)
[X] Can’t go a single day without thinking about Star Wars (well, I can’t help that, because we have SW stuff all over our house.)
[] Have all of the answers to Star Wars-related questions
[X] Are obsessed with Star Wars
[X] Would buy anything with the words “Star Wars” on it
[] Only play Star Wars music (Okay, that’s going a little far…)
[X] Only play Star Wars video games
[] Only read Star Wars books and/or blogs
[] Would only marry someone who was just as crazy about Star Wars as you are
[] Don’t discuss current world issues, only current Star Wars issues
[] Only watch Star Wars
[] Wouldn’t ever speak if Star Wars had never existed
Current Total: 7/16
You Have Been Asked At Least Five Times…
[] What’s the difference is between Jedi and Sith
[X] Why you like Star Wars so much
[] What’s wrong with Star Trek?
[X] Why you talk so much about Star Wars
[] Why you still like Star Wars, since it’s a “kid’s” show
[X] What’s so great about Star Wars?
[X] If you went to see The Phantom Menace when it came out in 3D
[X] If you’re going to see the other Star Wars films in 3D
[] Which is worse: Ewoks or Gungans?
[] Why you fire up when someone disses Star Wars
[X] Why George Lucas made the movies in the wrong order
[] Why you get all excited whenever you hear the words Star Wars and Special Edition in the same sentence
[X] If you named your new pet something Star Wars-y (YES! I HAVE DONE THIS!)
[] If your family gets fed up with your love of Star Wars (I think my Dad gets tired of it…)
[] If you play SWTOR or KOTOR
[X] Who shot first: Greedo or Han?
[] If you can speak Huttese
Final Total: 8/17
SCORING:
0-5….Do you even know what Star Wars is????
6-25….You’re an average casual fan, but not a nerd.
26-50….You’re pretty knowledgeable, and therefore a Star Wars nerd. You probably also appreciate Wookie Cookies.
51-75….You’re a Star Wars nut and not afraid to let people know it
76-95….You’re a Star Wars geek, and you want the whole world to know it. Don’t tone it down!
96-102….You are a total, die-hard, super, ultra, unsurpassable, mega-humungous Star Wars geek!
103….It don’t get no bigger than you. You, my friend, are the ULTIMATE Star Wars die-hard! Wear your Yoda ears proudly ‘cause you are the ULTIMATE!
I got the total of 63! A Star Wars Nut.
How did I know this was what I was going to get? I have been called a nut all my life; how fitting to be an official Star Wars nut. :D
~Jamie

In Which I Answer Kayla’s Questions


Kayla asked me some questions at her blog on THIS post and apparently quite a few people were waiting to see what my responses were, so I’m publishing them now before I forget. :D

1. Would you marry Steve Rogers if you had the chance to? Supposing he was a real person, of course.

Well, it would depend. He has most of the qualities I already want to see in my future husband, but I would still need to ask a few other questions, like if he was a born again believer…. Anyway, concerning the story, I really hope that he stays single; I think Peggy was his only love and I really hope that Sharon Carter character DOES NOT come into future movies. He just needs to stay single. Because Jedi-Chick and I will die if he doesn’t.

2. Would you rather meet Jane Foster or Britt Nicole in real life?

Kayla, do you realize how weird that reads? Jane Foster, a fictional woman of science, or Britt Nicole, a contemporary Christian artist…. Honestly, I haven’t thought of meeting eiether. I suppose I’d rather meet Britt Nicole.

3. What is your favorite quote from Jane Foster?

“I SWEAR I’m not doing this on purpose.” XD I think that’s what she said. Anyway, that was a funny part of the movie.

4. Are you annoyed I am asking you about Jane Foster?

I am really more confused… It’s not like I like Jane Foster or talk about her at all, so I’m kind of wondering why she’s the first thing that comes to your mind to ask me about….

5. Who do you like better, Luke or Leia? Why?

I like Luke better, because he’s obviously the main character of the Originals and the films showed more of his soul throughout the trilogy than Leia’s, so I feel more familiar with him than her.

6. Would you rather take math lessons with Thor or Black Widow? Assuming neither one has never taught math before.

I do not want to take math lessons at all, but I suppose I would rather do it with Black Widow. Thor’s magnificent power and presence would probably be a little distracting… (I would spend the time asking him about Loki, anyway.)

7. If you had the chance to give Black Widow a more modest jumpsuit or to forever erase the infamous bikini from ROTJ, which would you do? (Totally a sissy question)

The bikini. BY FAR, The bikini. As Carrie Fischer has said, that bikini came from hell and I want it to go back there forever….

8. What is your favorite thing about your sister, Kayla? (I hope this question doesn’t seem witchy of me.)

What does witchy mean? And…. I don’t know. I just like you as you. :P

9. Would you rather spend all day with Princess Leia or Black Widow? Assuming their characters came into your world for a day.

Well, one would have to first think about what you were going to do with them. If Leia–a government official–came to town, what would we do?? Hold press conferences about how Obi-Wan Kenobi is the only hope for this years presidential elections? Now, if I met Black Widow I could maybe meet Hawkeye through her…. So, that would be meeting TWO famous people instead of one…. I don’t know. I don’t care, I guess. It’s not like it’s going to happen, right? I guess I’d meet both; we’ll campaign for Obi-Wan Kenobi and Black Widow can take out all the rowdy people who get too excited.  And Hawkeye could also be there; he could report to Shield how The Avengers should team up with the Rebellion. How’s that?

10. If you saw Darth Vader standing on the sidewalk, would you go out to see him, or would you hide in the house and watch from the window?

What stupid person in their right mind would see the real Darth Vader–SITH LORD AND MURDERER– and run out to go see him? “Hi, Lord Vader, I’m such a huge fan of yours. Can I call you Anni?! Oh……. what are you doing with that lightsaber?” Uh, yeah, I would totally stay in the house and contact Shield somehow. “I think Loki has made contact with the Sith!”

11. Blasters or M9′s?

Blasters. They’re WAAAAY cooler. You can actually see where the ‘bullets’ go. :P

~Jamie